Prior to introducing The Social Factory to the world, I was an influencer over on Instagram at @TheAlyWolfe. I worked with a variety of businesses ranging from consumer goods to large brands and local businesses, and I found myself thinking, ‘Why don’t more people participate in influencer marketing?’ After a brief moment of pondering, it occurred to me that there is a large number of people who don’t know what influencer marketing is, and therefore haven’t taken advantage of it.
So, what is influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing is the partnership between a brand and social media influencer. The arrangement typically involves the brand providing monetary or product compensation to the social media influencer in exchange for a shout-out on Instagram, a blog post, product placement in their Youtube video, or something similar.
What defines an influencer?
An influencer is a well-respected authority on social media within a specific industry. They likely have a minimum of 10,000 followers on Instagram and an engaged audience that trusts their opinion on product, brands or services.
Why influencer marketing?
There are a variety of reasons why influencer marketing is a great option for businesses.
- Influencers already have an established fan base/following that trust them and their opinions on a place/product/service.
- It’s less expensive than traditional advertising.
- People will associate a person with your brand/product.
- Influencers take their own quality photos which you are able to repurpose after the fact.
How do I get started?
Finding an influencer that suits your brand is the first step towards an influencer marketing campaign. You can find influencers using relevant hashtags on Instagram, or location settings, by putting a call for influencers out on your Instagram page, or collaborating with other local businesses who may have worked with influencers previously.
Once you’ve found your influencer, it’s important to determine the key messages and hashtags you want the influencer to touch on in their content, as it will be a direct reflection of your brand with a potentially grand reach. Be sure to outline any stipulations or must-haves in your contract with the influencer, and request to see any captions or photos prior to posting.
*Note: influencers have a very specific audience and work hard to develop their personal brands. To ensure content feels authentic to them and their personal brand, allow them the freedom to develop captions and content using their own voice, as too structured of messaging can feel forced and disingenuous which can negatively impact your business in the long run.
Questions about influencer marketing? Let me know with a comment below and I’ll be sure to answer in an upcoming live video.